They got some help via the local newspaper in Laramie-which fed the story to The Associated Press, that in turn passed it along to AP-member papers and broadcasters around the country-spreading the word to "friends" that wanted to help out. Bill says, "We had people calling from Massachusetts, New Jersey, and California, saying, 'We want to help out on this car. we think it's a great thing you're doing.'" The project focus then changed from clean-it-up-and-get-it-running-again to giving Andrew something special.
That's also when donated parts started arriving at Wyotech's door. For the 'Cuda's body, that included new rear quarters and trunk floor extensions from YearOne, which the volunteer body crew skillfully welded in.
Andrew finds the driver seat...
Andrew finds the driver seat of his restified 'Cuda fits just right.
Andrew (center) with some...
Andrew (center) with some of the WyoTech volunteers who converted his '73 'Cuda from project to prize-worthy within five months.
The 'Cuda is driven into the...
The 'Cuda is driven into the trailer for its 13-hour trip back to Oklahoma. Handprint graphics on the taillight panel represent Andrew's daughters, Heather Sue and Kaylee Lynn.
For under the hood (a scooped one that was already on the car), the original 318 was replaced by a 5.7L Hemi that was salvaged from an '03 Dodge Ram pickup, which also yielded a five-speed automatic-overdrive transmission to replace the 904. The 8-3/4-inch rearend was rebuilt with a Detroit Tru Track differential wearing 4.10 gears to replace the worn-out original.
New pieces also went in at all four corners of the chassis. That included new control arms and torsion bars up front, Mopar Performance leaf springs and shackles in back, plus Edelbrock shocks all around. Each corner also gained a 14-inch Baer disc brake, along with a 17x8-inch American Racing "Rogue" wheel shod with a 235/55R17 Bridgestone Potenza. "We could've actually stepped up a little more [on tire size], but we were trying to judge how much we could fit in there and not take too much time," Bill says. "They fit nice."
Inside, a new sound system replaced the original AM radio, and the dashpad/seat covers that Andrew had already installed were retained. The console-mounted Slap Stick shifter was replaced with a Lokar unit to accommodate the new five-speed automatic mounted underneath it.
The body and paint crew got the restored E-Body good and ready for paint before spraying on the three-stage Sherwin-Williams "John Moss Yellow" color.
The 'Cuda was finished on schedule, and then loaded into a trailer for the long drive from Laramie to Andrew's church in Oklahoma, where the unveiling took place. Needless to say, Andrew was very surprised.
Remember, all work was done at the WyoTech facility by students. In our opinion, the finished car speaks volumes about the ability of WyoTech to get Young Guns on the right path.
For more photos and video of the car, check out www.moparmusclemagazine.com.
These partners provided parts and services for restifying Andrew Stiles' '73 'Cuda.
- Advanced Auto, Laramie, WY: Modified engine PCM
- Baer: Four-wheel disc brake system
- Brown & Gold, Laramie, WY: Shirts for build team; custom leather jacket for Andrew
- Carquest Auto Parts, Laramie, WY: Miscellaneous engine bolts, fasteners, bulbs
- Charlie's Oil Pans: Custom aluminum oil pan
- Classic Auto Air: Retro-fit A/C system
- Cowboy Glass & Mirror, Laramie, WY: Replacement windshield and rear window
- Edelbrock: Shock absorbers (4)
- K&N Filters: Air cleaner for 5.7L Hemi
- Laramie GM, Laramie, WY: Corvette fuel filter
- MagnaFlow Exhaust: 21/2-inch exhaust system
- NAPA Auto Parts, Laramie, WY: Miscellaneous engine bolts, fasteners, bulbs
- Redline Gauges: Retrofit rally gauges to modern electronics
- Rinkers Salvage, Laramie, WY: '03 Dodge Ram 5.7L Hemi engine and five-speed automatic transmission
- Rock Valley Stainless Fuel Tanks: Customized fuel tank
- Rockford Fosgate: Sound system amplifier/speakers/wiring (all but head unit)
- Sherwin-Williams: All paint products
- Street & Performance: Engine wiring harness, Lokar shifter
- Summit Racing Equipment: Brake booster, brake lines
- The Music Box, Laramie, WY: Head unit for sound system
- Valvoline: All fluids (motor oil, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, brake fluid)
- Western Upholstery: Headliner, carpets, vinyl for trunk and rear deck
- WyoTech, Laramie, WY: All labor, transportation, and financial obligations during build
- WyoTech grad Tim Ryan of Totally Auto: Factory rally gauge cluster
- YearOne: Reproduction quarter-panels, floorpans, and trunk floor extensions